Representing Team Lakay, Gina “Conviction” Iniong, 29, of Baguio City, Philippines faced her fourth loss as a professional mixed martial artist on July 7, 2018 at “ONE: Battle for the Heavens.” She lost to Istela Nunes, 26, of Parana, Brazil via unanimous decision.
After the loss, Iniong received some advice and encouragement from Team Lakay head coach Mark Sangiao. She shared, “Coach Mark always tells me to not be disappointed but instead be more motivated to become better. Losing is part of the game, which gives me the urgency to improve.”
“ONE: Battle for the Heavens” marked Iniong’s fifth ONE Championship bout and second loss in the promotion. The loss ignited her dedication to enhance her fighting skills even more.
“We are working on different things at the gym,” Iniong said. “There are things that need to be improved and skills that have to be sharpened. I’m willing to start from the bottom and climb my way to the top of the rankings.”
“I’m willing to fight anyone that they will put in front of me,” Iniong continued. She believes that she needs to work her way to the top and face the best of ONE Championship’s female atomweight bracket if she would like to earn a title shot in the future.
The six-time Philippine National Wushu Champion is very vocal of her desire to become a world champion under the promotion’s umbrella but she conceded to the fact that she is not yet ready to vie for the division’s intricately crafted hardware after evaluating her previous performances. She admitted, “There is a lot of work to do.”
“Yes, it’s my dream to have a world title be strapped around my waist,” Iniong added. “It takes time and patience to get to that moment. I am willing to work for it.”
Currently, Team Lakay has three reigning world champions in ONE Championship namely Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio, 29, Kevin “The Silencer” Belingon, 30, and Joshua “The Passion” Pacio. Their victories inspire Iniong to perform at the best of her abilities to achieve more in the sport.
“Witnessing my teammates succeed motivates me to come back even better and prove everyone that I deserve my spot here at ONE Championship,” Iniong said. “They will be seeing a different Gina Iniong in my next fight.”
Here is a clip featuring Iniong and some of her Team Lakay teammates: